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Meet Harekala Hajabba: A Journey From Fruit Seller To Padma Shri Award

| Published on January 29, 2020

There are very few people in the world who actually hold a deep concern with the younger generation and their future because the world is not the same anymore. It’s evolving, growing and stepping towards constant betterment and it has become necessary for each of us to match that level in order to stand firm in the society.

Harekala Hajabba seemed to have understood the phenomenon in-depth and so did not fail to take a major action when he realized the significance of education in one’s life. Read the full story below.
Harekala Hajabba

Joruney From A Fruit Seller To Padma Shri Holder!

Hajabba comes from a small village Newpadapu situated near Mangalore (Karnataka). He sold oranges and made around Rs.150/day to earn his bread and butter. He never completed his education but wanted children who reside in his village to complete theirs.

A painful incident changed Hajabba’s point of view yet strengthened his will to educate little children when a foreign couple asked him the price of oranges in English. He did not know how to answer that as he mostly spoke Kannada. He felt embarrassed and decided that he will not let the same situation become a reason for someone else’s hurt.

“The first time I felt handicapped because of my lack of education was when a foreigner asked me the price of the fruits in English. I didn’t know what he meant”, quoted by Hajabba in an interview with BBC. And with that, he had this powerful determination developing inside him to open a primary school in his village.
harekala hajabba

Hajabba’s Primary School!

He saved some money only to open a small school in the year 2000 without any help or support and the number of students that were registering went on growing at good pace. He managed a loan and put to use most of his savings that acted as an investment.

He, somehow, constructed a small building for a primary level school and worked really hard in the fund-raising area. He would clean and mop the school himself, boil water for the children and handle all the small chores all on his own.

And the moment came when he got a call that he is going to be awarded Padma Shri Award for the social work he has been indulged in for so long!

“They spoke in Hindi, I could not understand, but later someone from the DK DC’s (Dakshina Kannada Deputy Commissioner) office told me that I was selected for Padma Shri award. I could not believe it or dream of it, but I was happy,” he quoted.

Small efforts don’t change the entire world but the world of those who have dreams in their eyes but hopelessness surrounds them. We should all come forward and express gratitude towards such humanity that still exists.

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